Films That Barely Got by with a PG-13

Discussion in 'Movies' started by WillG, Aug 28, 2005.

  1. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    I was having a discussion with my girlfriend about what some of the differences between what gets a film a PG-13 vs and R Rating. It led me to think of films that just seemed to squeak by with a PG-13, some of the "hardest" films that got by with the rating, films that I was surpried was only PG-13 instead of R or films which probably should have received an "R" according to MPAA standards but for some reason got away with the PG-13. A few off the top of my head.

    "As Good as it Gets" - Helen Hunt makes a refenence to "Fucking" in a sexual context. Should be an automatic "R" but I suppose it got by with the PG-13 because of the "Prestige" status of the film.

    "Minority Report" - The shot of the couple having sex during the spider scene seemed to me like it was really pushing the limits. True, the naughty parts were strategically covered, but still seemed risque. (I think Spielberg has been known to have receieved a little extra latitiude from the Ratings Board that most directors don't get)

    Of course "Titanic" for the sketch scene. Yes, it was tastefully done, but it seems like you see more than what would be considered PG-13 safe "Breif Nudity"

    Anyone have some other examples?
     
  2. Jesse Blough

    Jesse Blough Second Unit

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    I always thought Little Nicky should have been rated R.

    I hate it when movies like that squeak by with a PG-13 and yet movies like Lost in Translation get a R rating. The way movies get rated is so messed up. [​IMG]
     
  3. Garrett Lundy

    Garrett Lundy Producer

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    Beauty Shop was rated R, but then rerated Pg-13 on appeal with no changes in content. I'd never seen that happen before.
     
  4. Cory H.

    Cory H. Stunt Coordinator

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    I think it's best that LIT was R, so that fewer people saw it in theatres. [​IMG]

    Not that's even PG-13, I'm surprised "A Streetcar Named Desire" got away with PG, and Pal's "WOTW" a G! A PRIEST IS INCINERATED FOR PETE'S SAKE!
     
  5. RyanAn

    RyanAn Screenwriter

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    Cory, the first film ever to get a PG-13 rating was in 1984's Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Prior to that, films were G, PG, R, and X. Streetcar was not bad enough to elicit an R, so it is a good thing it got a PG.

    Ryan
     
  6. Kevin Grey

    Kevin Grey Cinematographer

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    Nope, it was Red Dawn. Temple of Doom, combined with that other Spielberg produced film of 1984 Gremlins, were what instigated enough outrage to get the PG-13 created, however.

    And my vote- "Woman in Red" which actually has full frontal female nudity.
     
  7. RyanAn

    RyanAn Screenwriter

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  8. Linda Thompson

    Linda Thompson Supporting Actor

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    It's been a long time since I've watched "Kramer vs Kramer", but, didn't it have brief nudity (JoBeth Williams in a hallway, meeting Billy for the first time), as well as some semi-strong language, yet it was only rated PG?
     
  9. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    Another oft mentioned film like that was "The Andromeda Strain" It has a G Rating but there is a shot of a bare chested female corpse, a scientist cuts into a dead man's wrist which releases powdered blood and there is a pretty realistic depection of a monkey dying from exposure to a virus, not to mention language that you would not expect to find in a G rated film. I believe that in the trailer there was a disclaimer warning that some scenes in the film might be too intense for younger viewers, but isn't that what PG is for?

    It does seem the ratings board was a lot more liberal concerning content in the 70s and 80s. It would be interesting to see what ratings many of the 70's and 80's PG movies would be rated R (or a very borderline PG-13) if submitted today. And in contrast, there were also films rated R back then that seem very tame by today's standards. With the exception of the bedroom scene with Michael and Appalonia, I think "The Godfather" today could have squeaked by with a PG-13.

    I remember watching that dumb movie where McCauley Culkin was evil..."The Good Son" I believe and wondering why that got an R rating, becuase McCauley uses the word "Fuck" (non-sexually)? that's the only thing in that movie which brings it remotely close to an R Rating. I guess all this really proves is how disjointed the ratings board is.
     
  10. DavidBC

    DavidBC Second Unit

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    As Good As It Gets originally did recieve an R rating, according to James L. Brooks on the commentary. They appealed for a PG-13 and got it.
     
  11. Kevin Grey

    Kevin Grey Cinematographer

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    Eh, I think "The Godfather" had enough graphic violence in it to definitely still warrant an 'R'. Hell, the horse's head scene alone is probably enough.
     
  12. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    Well, you might be right, but I still say the violence is rather tame even compared to stuff that makes it onto network television in many cases.
     
  13. James T

    James T Screenwriter

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    Highlander 3 is PG-13, but there's plenty of scenes that would have made it R. For example, there's the beheadings, but also a scene where the bad guy hooks up with a hooker, and also when Christopher Lambert gets it on with Debroah Unger with plenty of nudity.

    Army of Darkness would have to get my vote for movie that doesn't deserve an R rating.
     
  14. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    "Parenthood" is another one that just came to mind. There was some very frank sexuality discussions. A few thinly veiled allusions to oral sex. A Dildo used as a comic setpiece. Discussions and near visualizations of pornography and even drug references. It did really push the limits of PG-13.
     
  15. JeremySt

    JeremySt Screenwriter

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    edit... somebody beat me to it!
     
  16. Ray H

    Ray H Producer

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    Doesn't "My Best Friend's Wedding" also get away with this?

    Also, I don't think The Frighteners deserved its R rating.
     
  17. JohnRice

    JohnRice Lead Actor

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    "Clever" comments like that are getting so old.


    While I'm at it Cory, your sig is...

    1) In clear violation of HTF rules (size)

    2) Spelled wrong.


    If I was going to make something that big, I'd make sure my spelling was right

    Red Dawn seemed to be pushing it for PG-13, but maybe they were testing out the rating. I always thought The Ring was pretty intense for a PG-13.
     
  18. Ryan L. Bisasky

    Ryan L. Bisasky Second Unit

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    I thought the movie "meet the fockers" also really pushed the pg-13 rating also with some frank dialogue
     
  19. Grant H

    Grant H Cinematographer

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    The video release of Highlander 3 is R-rated. The theatrical release was supposedly tamer (I did not see it in theaters.)
     
  20. Paul McElligott

    Paul McElligott Cinematographer

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    If Roger Ebert were posting here, he would probably advise you against trying to see any logic in MPAA ratings. Down that road lies madness.

    The R for Lost in Translation was especially baffling. [​IMG]
     

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